Sunday, May 29, 2005

all gone.

I had a gig in the old 'hood last night, and made the mistake of going for a walk.

As I mentioned months ago, Pirri's fruit market is gone; now it's a computer place. Now, every second house on Churchill - the street next to my old one - is fenced in and slated for demolition. My favourite mock orange bush is half cut down, the other half crushed by an orange plastic fence - its house will be torn down and turned into a monster home. So I went to check on my favourite iris garden in the next block. It was bulldozed, save for one lone iris. It was then that I burst into tears.

That's it - nearly every remnant of my childhood is gone. My mother is dead, and my father might as well be. My grandparents are gone, and so by extension is Parry Sound. The home I grew up in was bulldozed thirteen years ago along with the other houses on the block, and I have to sell the cottage I spent my childhood summers in (long story, please don't ask). The few remaining things I enjoyed about Willowdale, like one silly bush here or a loved garden there, have been destroyed, or soon will be. So that's it. There's hardly a single damn thing left.

If you're as nostalgic and sentimental as I, you might have an idea how brutal this is for me. Of course, the impending anniversary of Mom's death has had me in a bad space for a while. Last year I was distracted by academic life; this year it's hitting me hard.

There's nothing left to do but swallow hard, say "screw it", and move forward.


Blogger kelly said...

Oh! I had no idea they had destroyed our old stomping grounds like that. It's been years since I was last in the neighbourhood, but my old house on Hollywood was still there -- although the last few decades hasnt been very nice to it. The owners/residents after us didn't take care of the property at all, and my mom's garden was in shambles.

I guess the developers want to make it a homogenous n'hood now, a total shame since those houses were part of what gave Willowdale it's charm.

May 30, 2005 9:39 a.m.  
Blogger Mrs. M. said...

It's amazing - I barely recognize the neighbourhood. I don't remember your house on Hollywood too well, but your old building, which was the first big condo building in the area, is now surrounded by dozens more buildings. The street it's on now cuts straight through to my old one, forming a 'ring road' for Yonge. I forgot to mention that my favourite old playground is now a daycare centre. Sigh.

And the house prices! Even a tiny bungalow can sell for half a million dollars. It's generally assumed that anyone who buys a bungalow there will only tear it down anyway.

If we buy a house, we'll probably have to stay in the East end or haul ass out to the country. Either way, there are worse things. I sure miss my old house, the one you would remember. I totally took it for granted when I was a kid. Wah!

May 30, 2005 2:28 p.m.  

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